Pausing and Praying for Strangers

I love meeting people along the way in my travels. As I often say, there are no coincidences in life. I met this man at the airport before boarding my flight to New York from Wisconsin. As he approached, sweeping up little pieces of debris with his worn out straw broom, I thanked him for his hard work. I had been in the company of dear Father John Hardon, S.J. on many occasions when he thanked cleaning women and janitors for their work. You see, Fr. Hardon’s mother was a cleaning woman and he made it a point to thank people who work hard to keep our surroundings clean. So, I was thinking of Father, using “a page from his book” as that man approached. My heart went out to that man. He stopped for a moment and thanked me, seemingly very surprised that I would complement him on his work and even thank him. He said it’s extremely rare for him to get a compliment. 

So, we got to talking.  I love when a conversation unfolds with a stranger. Or, someone whom Mother Teresa would call “Jesus in the distressing disguise of the poorest of the poor.“ I shared a bit about my faith with this man. He told me he is an ex Catholic. I gave him one of my Mother Teresa prayer cards which shows her holding my son. It has a prayer on the back that I wrote. He looked carefully at the card and then placed it in his cart. I just love how he put it there in his cart facing him. 

And then I ventured to offer him a blessed Miraculous Medal even though he is an ex Catholic—he accepted it. He said he is saved by Jesus. I told him that it was Jesus‘s mother on the medal. He took it from me and placed into his pocket and told me he would get in touch with me later on. I gave him my business card. We talked a bit more and then I needed to head toward security to eventually board my delayed flight. That is another story about the searches, getting stuck in the air for a while, etc. 😳

I prayed a rosary on my flight specifically for this man. I also prayed hard for the man I met a bit later–the one who yelled at me when I was putting my carry-on luggage into the overhead bin when boarding the flight. He was in a mad rush and acted very mean and rude toward me, trying to push me out of his way. I told him–very calmly in a quiet voice, “It will be OK.“ because I knew he was steaming mad and I tried to defuse it, or at least help him to feel better in some way. But, he shot back, “No! It won’t be OK!” And he continued yelling all the way down the aisle to his seat, saying unkind things about me. His wife tried to calm him down, but this man was very angry at me for some reason. However, despite the uncomfortable feeling in being a convenient scapegoat for him, it gave me a wonderful opportunity to want to pray for the angry man. God knows just what He needs and I pray to be a little instrument of God’s love.

No doubt about it, God places these people in our lives for a reason. Will we venture to push a bit beyond our comfort zones to minister to the walking wounded? Everyone has a story. Everyone is loved by God. God asks the faithful to minister to His children. A kind word or gesture, sharing our faith with strangers when possible–all help to transform hearts and souls–including our own! Many times, small acts of love can bring hope to someone’s troubled heart and soul.

Be attentive! Look up from your devices and phones and see who it is, perhaps standing before you or close by that God wants you to minister to. Remember too, that Mother Teresa had said, “Love begins at home.” Let’s also be sure not to neglect our own families and the needs there at home by running off to save the world.

“Angels of God” Fr. Andrew Apostoli talks about the Angels

My dear friend Fr. Andrew Apostoli, C.F.R. talks about the Angels on this show on EWTN: Sunday Night Prime. He was reiterating some of the things we had said on our Angel show prior to this one and mentioned some things that we ran out of time to talk about. We have done two Angel shows together.

One thing that Fr. Andrew reminds us that I mentioned in our previous Angel conversation is that our Guardian Angel brings us at least three things:

!) PEACE when we are troubled or suffering.
2) PENITENCE from our sins, encouraging us to make reparation
3) INSPIRING US TO PRAY to be strengthened and enlightened.

Take a look here below to watch the show:

 

Unveiling my UPCOMING book!

I am very excited to announce my new upcoming book for military women and those women associated with the military in some way, as well as for those who would like to know more about their lives…

For all women associated with the military!

Book Description: This book is for every woman associated with the military, whether on land, on sea, or in the air and for all those at home who are waiting for their loved one to return or who are living on military bases, or struggling with the myriad of demands connected with military life.

Catholic military women are very special “Soul Sisters.” There s a certain military pride shared amongst them they are in solidarity in a common goal to defend human life, to fight injustice, to protect their country, and support their military husbands, brothers, sons, daughters, cousins, nieces and nephews [or “their military family”]. They have heroically placed their lives on the line on battlefields, as well as in battling military issues on the home front too.

Best-selling and award-winning author Donna-Marie Cooper O’Boyle, an honorary lifetime member of the Military Council for Catholic Women (MCCW) shines a light on these gallant, heroic women who carry on with great faith, hope, humility, and love and whose heroism doesn’t remain on the battlefield, but is woven into the very fabric of their lives.

Traditional and original prayers, as well as teachings and inspiration from Jesus, Mary, and the Saints are woven throughout the entire book to give a powerful shot in the arm and to uplift spirits. This book will surely speak to the hearts of military mothers, wives, and women who are serving or have served in the military. It will also be a source of prayer and inspiration for anyone connected to the military the patriotic, and for anyone who would like to learn more about these courageous military women.

Due out on February 22, 2018. You can pre-order your copy today by clicking here!

Watch the EWTN Family Celebration on Saturday and Sunday!

Here are a couple of real quick promos for the EWTN Family Celebration:

 

You can see the EWTN Family Celebration on Saturday, September 16th and Sunday, September 17th. I gave a talk on Fatima last Saturday in Worcester which was filmed and will be aired on Saturday September 16th. I also appeared on a live television show that Saturday evening which was hosted by Marus Grodi and also televised. It will air Saturday evening.


This lovely family came all the way from Singapore to be at the EWTN Family Celebration!

Nurture Your Own Faith! Newest Teaching on Feeding Your Family’s Soul!

Have a look at the newest teaching by Donna-Marie titled, “Nurture Your Own Faith!” After clicking the video BELOW to play it, move the time marker to the 4:00 minute mark (if it doesn’t begin at that point already) and watch until approximately 6:48. Or, watch the whole show! ENJOY!

Latest Segment: “Build Your Backbone: Don’t be a Dead Body!”

Build Your Back bone!

Have a look at my latest teaching in my EWTN TV series “Feeding Your Family’s Soul.”

Click on the video image below to start. Click the little “icon” on the right for “go full screen” if you’d like it to be larger. Move the time marker to the 6:37 mark and watch the short teaching until about the 8:47 mark. Or, watch the whole show. Enjoy!

Another episode of Donna-Marie’s “Feeding Your Family’s Soul”

 

 

 

 

 

 

What does my mother’s rolling pin have

to do with teaching the faith and keeping family traditions alive?

 

Watch the You Tube video below to see my latest “Feeding Your Family’s Soul” teaching on EWTN!

 

 

After pressing the “play” arrow, you can move the time marker over to about the 4:12 mark and it will play until about 7:30 or you can certainly watch the whole episode. Enjoy!

 

Busy, busy, busy summer!

It’s been a busy summer thus far. I have been doing a lot of traveling for speaking and book signing. And also filmed a Bookmark segment with Doug Keck.

No slowing down just yet. I hope I can at least pause in August for even a day or two. But, actually, we will celebrate a family birthday very soon and I will be in my glory to have all my ducklings in a row–first time in a long time. Plus I’ll get to see this little guy again! I simply cannot wait!

On the home front…you probably know that I live way out in the woods of rural Connecticut. The bear has visited our home a few times and was even in the back of my husband’s truck one night!

A couple of house wrens are chittering and chattering away most days deciding upon where to build their nest. First, they put it just outside my office window but have decided to move it to another location. I’ll be keeping a look out to see where they’ll end up. I am a bird watcher, after all!

The great blue heron has visited many times lately–always a highlight in my day to see such a huge and majestic, yet prehistoric looking bird. He comes right on my deck! Yesterday, I looked up from my writing work just in time to see the huge creature flying right by my window!

On another note, I want to let you know about the upcoming episodes for my new show. “Feeding Your Family’s Soul” EWTN TV series.

The dates for August are:

Monday, August 14
Thursday, August 17
Monday, August 21
Monday, August 28

All are shown on the “At Home with Jim and Joy” Show. In case you missed the first two episodes, the first episode is here. And the second is here.

The EWTN Family Celebration is coming up! I’ll be speaking about Fatima at the celebration in Worcester, Mass on September 9th and 10th. I’ll also be appearing on the Live show that Saturday evening, along with Marcus Grodi, Fr. Mitch Pacwa, Doug Keck, Michael Warsaw and a couple of others. You can check that out here.

There’s a very small window of time to register for my pilgrimage to Fatima and Portugal coming up September 17th through the 27th with Fr. Andrew Apostoli! If you’d like to come, please consider registering RIGHT AWAY before time runs out. Here is the information. 

Fatima & Poland!

Second segment of my new EWTN TV series: “Become a beacon of light!”

Here is the second segment of my series: “Feeding Your Family’s Soul” aired on the “At Home with Jim and Joy” show. It’s about being a beacon of light to the world in simple ways. After pressing “play,” you can move the time marker over to the 5:30 mark and I’ll be visiting until about the 8:31 mark. ENJOY!

 

Feeding Your Family’s Soul series on EWTN

Here is the first segment of my series “Feeding Your Family’s Soul” on EWTN. You can see it on the “At Home with Jim and Joy” show. I come in for a visit at about the 5:15 minute mark until about the 9:12 mark. Simply click the video on and then you can slide the time marker over to the 5:15 mark or just watch the whole “At Home” show. It is an inspiring show. Enjoy!

Donna-Marie speaking at the EWTN Family Celebration

Below is EWTN’s Press Release. This year’s Family Celebration theme is the 100th Anniversary of Fatima. I’ll be speaking at this event, as well as will be doing book signings, Meet & Greets, and will appear on the Live show on Saturday night! I hope you can join us. It’s FREE! See the speaking schedule here.

 

PRESS RELEASE

July 5, 2017

 

Come to EWTN’s 2017 Family Celebration in Worcester, Mass. 

Celebrate The 100th Anniversary of Fatima With Headliners Such As
Fr. Mitch Pacwa, Marcus Grodi, Susan Conroy,
Fr. Maurice Emelu & Donna Marie Cooper O’Boyle

Irondale, AL (EWTN) – Celebrate the 100th Anniversary of Fatima with EWTN at the Network’s 2017 Family Celebration Sept. 9-10 at the DCU Convention Center in Worcester, Mass. Headliners include Father Mitch Pacwa (“EWTN Live”), Marcus Grodi (“The Journey Home”), Susan Conroy, Fr. Maurice Emelu, and Donna-Marie Cooper O’Boyle.

In addition, EWTN Chairman & CEO Michael P. Warsaw will host a not-to-be-missed Family Talk with EWTN President Doug Keck (“EWTN Bookmark”), EWTN Chaplain Father Joseph Mary Wolfe, the Franciscan Missionaries of the Eternal Word, and more.

“My favorite part of every Celebration is meeting our EWTN Family members from near and far,” Warsaw said. “This Celebration is our thank you to them for their love and support throughout the years.”

The headlining talks are only the beginning. Guests will also have the opportunity to be part of a studio audience for a taping of a special “EWTN Family Celebration Live Show,” celebrate Mass with Worcester Bishop Robert J. McManus and EWTN’s Friars, and meet EWTN hosts and authors while browsing the EWTN Religious Catalogue shop.

Plus, there will be plenty of opportunity for Adoration and Confession, and children will be thrilled to meet some of their favorite characters from “EWTN Faith Factory.” EWTN Radio will broadcast live on-site throughout the weekend and staff from the National Catholic Register will be on hand to answer your questions. You’ll even have an opportunity to join EWTN in its mission of evangelization by becoming an EWTN Media Missionary!

It’s a feast for the mind, the heart, and the spirit! For more information, please go to our website: http://www.ewtn.com/familycelebration/.

We look forward to seeing you there!

EWTN Global Catholic Network, in its 36th year, is the largest religious media network in the world. EWTN’s 11 TV channels are broadcast in multiple languages 24 hours a day, seven days a week to over 268 million television households in more than 145 countries and territories. EWTN platforms also include radio services transmitted through SIRIUS/XM, iHeart Radio, and over 500 domestic and international AM & FM radio affiliates; a worldwide shortwave radio service; the largest Catholic website in the U.S.; electronic and print news services, including Catholic News Agency, “The National Catholic Register” newspaper, and several global news wire services; as well as EWTN Publishing, its book publishing division.

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More here.

Just one word totally melted my heart!

Early spring on a blustery cool day

It is impossible to put into words how one word melted my heart. But, I’ll try.

I have a beautiful two-year-old grandson who lives in another state. I’m glad that he lives within driving distance, though it does take a good while to get there. Usually, about once a month I get to see him. As you can imagine, that is definitely not enough. So, in between visits, we see one another through video conferencing whenever we can work that out. I try to daily. 🙂 If I had my way, I’d live next door to him.

I recently visited his home to babysit for a few days. I was in my glory being with him. I managed to snap a quick picture of him standing at the window watching for my husband and I to pull into his driveway. If you look closely, you’ll see a thrilled little face within the sunlight designs decorating the window panes.

My sweet grandson used to call me “GWAND-ma.” Now, it’s closer to “Grandma.” However he chooses to pronounce my name is just fine with me. But, he is quite the talker and tells me about his every adventure. I absolutely love it.

It was hot and humid few days, but we had lots of fun and even picked fresh strawberries from the backyard garden…

Just a few days ago when it was time for me to leave to get back to the routine in Connecticut, my daughter broke the news to her son that it was time for me to go back home.

“No!” He said, seemingly quite startled to hear the unsettling news.

He quickly leaned forcefully out of his mother’s arms and practically jumped into mine. Once secure in my arms, he patted my back while clinging tightly to me with his other arm. For a few seconds my precocious young grandson seemed to be at a loss for words as he kept patting my back and struggled to express himself. Then, suddenly he uttered just one single yet powerful word.

“Stay!”

Oh, how my heart melted right then. I wished I could stay but it was time to go. It was so hard to leave. Needless to stay, there were lots of hugs and kisses going around. Lord willing, I’ll be back up to see him just as soon as I can.

What an amazing blessing to be a GWAND-ma.

A review of my book “Our Lady of Fatima: 100 Years of Stories, Prayers, and Devotions”

Have you heard the message of Fatima?  Even if you are familiar with Mary’s apparitions at Fatima, I guarantee you haven’t heard the story told quite like this before.  And if you’re skeptical about the whole thing, all the more reason to pick up this book.

Mary wants to lead us to her Son, Jesus Christ.  She wants peace for the world, and she wants us to repent of our sins so we can all make it to Heaven!

There’s no better time to pick up this book than right now, as we are about to celebrate the 100th anniversary of these apparitions.  In fact, the Church will celebrate the Feast of Our Lady of Fatima on May 13, which is right around the corner.  On this day, Pope Francis will also canonize Jacinta and Francisco, two of the Fatima visionaries, as Saints for the whole world to celebrate!

In this book, author Donna-Marie Cooper O’Boyle takes readers through a century of fascinating stories related to Fatima.  She recounts what occurred in this city back in 1916 and 1917, and the fulfillment of the Fatima prophecies that have taken place since that time.  She also shares things that Sr. Lucia experienced later in her life as she worked to ensure that Mary’s message spread throughout the Church, and that things were completed as Mary and Jesus requested.

In these pages, you will hear remarkable stories you’ve never heard before, and details that you won’t find in other places.  Did you know that Saint Mother Teresa planned a top secret mission in Russia specifically to occur just as Saint John Paul II consecrated Russia to Mary’s Immaculate Heart?  Did you know she pulled it off?  Do you know about the devotion of the Five First Saturdays?  Do you know why Mary specifically requested five and not six or seven?  Have you heard the Fatima prayers?  Do you know how you can incorporate these prayers into your daily life to make atonement for the sins of the world?  All of this and more is shared in this fascinating book.

Perhaps as astounding as the Fatima miracles themselves, are the personal experiences of the author that she shares at the end of the book.  I don’t want to spoil the ending, but it’s unbelievable what this woman endured for the sake of this writing, and the timing of her injuries is absolutely astounding.

In short, I had a hard time putting this book down!  You won’t want to miss this exciting read, especially as we celebrate the 100th Anniversary of the Fatima apparitions this year. We all must now do our part to make reparation for the sins of this world.  Find out what you can do to live the Fatima message today!

And a note to any skeptics:  With Mary, you have nothing to fear except fear itself.  Fear of Mary will only keep you from Mary, which will only keep you from a deeper intimacy with Christ.  Our Mother Mary who is Our Lady of Fatima, is the Mother of Jesus Christ who is our brother.  Hence, she is our Mother, too, and Jesus also gave her to us on the Cross.  Mary is truly amazing.  She also only wants to do the will of her Son.  She wants to support Jesus as much as possible in the work of bringing all souls to Heaven.  Perhaps you will be able to get to know her just a little better through the words in this book.

[As seen here on Amazon]

Okay, I’ll admit, I talk to bears!

It was a beautiful grace-filled day. My husband and I drove to the Divine Mercy Shrine in Stockbridge, Mass. to have a retreat sort of day on our wedding anniversary. I guess you can even call it a pilgrimage. We went to Mass there and the wonderful Fr. Chris Alar was the homilist and gave a stunning homily on the Blessed Trinity on the Solemnity of the Most Holy Trinity. We prayed the Divine Mercy chaplet after the Mass along with those congregated there and were blessed individually with a First Class relic of St. Faustina.

Statue of St. Faustina at the Shrine

We visited the beautiful gift shop and saw many of my books as well as other beautiful items. I spotted these copies of my new book Feeding Your Family’s Soul and asked the employee if they were going to go out on the shelves (since I was wondering about them stacked on the cart. What she said brought a smile to my face.

“Oh these are new! We just got them in and I’ll put them out. But, if you want to buy a copy, feel free!” I then, in a sort of a whisper said, “Actually, I am the author.” She looked up with mouth open in amazement.

She said, “Wow! And your name is ALL over this place! I was doing inventory this week and I saw your name all around.”

I’ll write another blog post, most likely, about our beautiful wedding anniversary, but first I’ll let you in on my conversations with a visiting bear last night.

Yes, I have to admit that I talked to a bear! He didn’t seem very interested in what I had to say. It was fascinating seeing him standing so tall only feet away from me. Black bears aren’t ferocious like brown bears. But black bears can be dangerous when they feel threatened, when they are a Mama bear with cubs to protect, and oh yes, when they are hungry. This guy was hungry. 🙂

I’ll share my conversations with the bear if you promise not to laugh…:) I’ll get that video out on a blog post soon.